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Celebrate Easter every day

March 31, 2008

by Pastor Marc Grindle, Dassel Church of Christ

Some of you may have heard this story before, but I feel it is definitely worth hearing again.

Little Philip, born with Down’s syndrome, attended a thirdgrade Sunday school class with several 8yearold boys and girls.

Typical of that age, the children did not readily accept Philip with his differences. But because of a creative teacher, they began to care about Philip and accept him as part of the group, though not fully.

The Sunday after Easter, the teacher brought some pantyhose containers, the kind that look like large eggs. Each child received one and were told to go outside on that lovely spring day, find some symbol for new life, and put it in the egg-like container. Back in the classroom, they would share their newlife symbols, opening the containers one-by-one in surprise fashion.

After running about the church property in wild confusion, the students returned to the classroom and placed the containers on the table. Surrounded by the children, the teacher began to open them one-by-one. After each one, whether a flower, butterfly, or leaf, the class would “ooh” and “ahh.”

Then, one was opened revealing nothing inside.

The children exclaimed, “That’s stupid. That’s not fair. Somebody didn’t do their assignment.”

Philip spoke up, “That’s mine.”

“Philip, you don’t ever do things right!” a student responded. “There’s nothing there!”

“I did so do it,” Philip insisted. “I did do it. It’s empty. The tomb was empty!”

Silence followed. From then on, Philip became a full member of the class.

Not long after this, Philip died from an infection that most normal children would have overcome. At the funeral, this class of 8yearold’s marched up to the altar, not with flowers, but with their Sunday school teacher, each to lay on it an empty pantyhose egg.

The lives of the children in a Sunday school class were transformed by the least likely student of all!

The tomb was empty!

This Easter season, I want to challenge you to focus not on celebrating the day with bunnies, eggs, and candy . . . but rather, focus on the resurrected Savior.

Allow Jesus to transform your life.

Allow Jesus to give you real hope.

Jesus himself said, “Because I live, you will live also.” (John 14:19).

Easter is not a holiday to be celebrated one day a year . . . rather, it is the celebration of our living Savior, to be celebrated every day of the year.